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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2007 4:36 pm 
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Location: Bethesda, Gwynedd
Nothing wrong with Fighting Fantasy. I used to have books 1-41 at one point in my life. That was back when they cost £2.50 each. The Rings of Kether and Crypt of the Sorcerer I remember being particularly good.


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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2007 4:47 pm 
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Location: UK
I remember devouring Andre Norton books from the library, one after the other followed by Have Spacesuit Will Travel, etc. My Dad's dogeared Childhood's End sent a shiver down my spine. After that most of my reading was fantasy: Tolkien, Covenant, Watership Down ... err forget I said that. Sci-Fi wise it was TV & film for me at that time, but then I was a lucky Sci-Fi obsessed teenager (Star Trek, Blake's 7, Star Wars, the finest hours of Dr Who, Alien, etc). As a student I started reading science fantasy - Dune, Julian May, Helliconia and crossed back over. After that I read Shikasta and a whole screed of non-sci-fi 'proper' books that read pretty much like sci-fi to me and got me all het-up about genre for a decade or so.

As people have said earlier, I would be very reluctant to go back and re-read Andre Norton and the other the stuff that got me started. Maybe just a little, for the sake of a spoof... oh no ... my Amazon Finger is restless now :twisted:

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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 4:17 pm 
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Location: Derbyshire, UK
I think Dr Who must have got me into SF originally. I can't remember anything before that (I'm talking John Pertwee here BTW). So lots of Dr Who books, most probably by Terrence Dicks, would have been my introduction.

Once I ventured down to the local library SF section, I think I started with some Star Trek Log Books. However, one book that stands out amongst the others in my memory is Frederick Pohl's "Man Plus". That really got me hooked. After that it was a question of working my way through A C Clarke, Asimov, Heinlein, Blish, Dick and others around during the mid/late 70's.


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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 6:50 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 8:30 pm
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Location: Barnsley, England
The first sf & fantasy I remember reading is Asimov. I think I developed the ambition to grow up to be Asimov about the same time :D slight problem of gender, education, etc, so I put that aside for a while.

I also remember reading Storm Constantine at about age 13 or 14 - definitely a bit of a shock to the early teen system, but I had finished the chil;dren's section at the local library. I've read one or two since and they make a bit more sense these days :)

ANd I grew up with Sylvester McCoy as Dr Who and Startrek next generation came out when I was about 11 or 12, so I guess they also got me hooked. Not to mention reruns of the original, Buck Rogers and such.

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 15, 2009 9:53 pm 
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Location: Uppsala, Sweden
I got into Sf by hanging around a fine but now-defunct library, as I describe here: http://www.farrockaway.com/georgebergerlibrary.html . A great building, with books of a sort that are no longer published. My tribute to a vanished culture in a little-known part of New York City.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 15, 2009 10:04 pm 
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Location: Uppsala, Sweden
I am re-reading Peter Watts' BLINDSIGHT, since I have been interested in neuroscience since 1969. The book is even better on a second reading. Not only do I have a reasonably solid grasp of what is going on, but I have learned a bit more about the brain since my first reading. My first impression was correct: the more you know about current technical psychology and neurophysiology the more Dr. Watts' book will tend to force you to THINK about the human mind. Or the Alien mind.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2009 8:50 am 
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Hi Whoever. You must have nerves of steel and a strong stomach to have gotten hooked on SF by reading MAN PLUS. It is one of the HEAVIEST SF books I have ever read. I loved it, but now remember little except its unrelenting assault on my mind/brain. I was surprised by how different it was from F. P.'s other, or earlier, works. No humor, no satire, just a powerful comment on the human condition, although I have no idea what points he wanted to make. For a dreary comparison try a somewhat similar tale by Walter Miller (of Leibowitz fame). Its title is in Latin and I don't have it here right now. The story's moral is quite different and, frankly, repelled me.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 11, 2009 4:28 pm 
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All the usual TV and film stuff for my age group. Dr Who, Star Trek, Star Wars, V, Battlestar Galactica. Plus all the old stuff that used to get shown on BBC 2 back then -- movie serials such as Flash Gordon, Buck Rogers and King of the Rocketmen as well as standalones like The Day the Earth Stood Still, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, Invaders From Mars, The War of the Worlds etc.

Bookswise it's another vote for Terrance Dicks and the various other authors who did the Dr Who novelizations. Plus Conan Doyle's The Lost World. And one of my favourite Biggles novels was Biggles Hits the Trail which featured villains who possessed a death ray, could turn invisible and commanded a swarm of flesh-eating centipedes.

Comicswise, Empire Strikes Back Monthly which made up all kinds of weird stories to plug the gap while they waited for Return of the Jedi to come out. It also featured lots of Twilight Zone style short strips and Killraven about a futuristic gladiator turned freedom fighter taking on H.G. Wells's Martians after they return to Earth for a rematch. I also had an old Dan Dare annual and read the first few issues of the relaunched Eagle.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 11, 2009 5:37 pm 
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Location: Uppsala, Sweden
Stu, if Flash Gordon helped get you hooked on SF, then take a look WITH SOUND at this link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OUbGkSfaKrs . It's from the Flash that I saw (3 times) in NYC around or before 1955. THIS scene and that of the CLAY PEOPLE are engraved onto my memory! The music is a fragment from F. Liszt's LES PRELUDES. A nearby fragment was used by the Nazis as the theme music for their "news" programs. If you have seen the brilliant DAS BOOT you might remember those bars. Too bad that great art got so tarnished.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 11, 2009 7:03 pm 
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Cheers for that. The great thing about Buster Crabbe is that he looks exactly like one of Alex Raymond's pictures of Flash Gordon come to life.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 11, 2009 7:45 pm 
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Location: Uppsala, Sweden
That's one of the most campy scenes I have ever seen. that spaceship! In some scenes in that version you see it take off. It SPIRALS into the sky with rockets firing away (and with Les Preludes blasting away). Figure that one out.
Somewhere on this topic I describe the Library where I got serious about SF, way back in 56 or 57. It's possible that Flash provided the impetus.


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